The beauty of going to music school is that the entire environment fosters random collaborations and extemporaneous creation, inside the classroom and, especially, out. And if you’re going to go to music school, there’s no finer place than Berklee College of Music. Located in Boston, this legendary establishment boasts grads like St. Vincent’s Annie Clark, Rivers Cuomo, Aimee Mann, John Mayer, and PSY (is Wikipedia totally making that up? Someone fact check that shit for me.)
Following in these great and Gangnam footsteps: Ripe. They formed just a year ago, but already are lighting up Back Bay with a slew of house shows and other events where they bring the party with their fun, jammy sound. Name sound familiar? Maybe you’ve heard their tracks on Muzooka, or caught the shout-out from music industry veteran, and new Ripe fan, Tony Mardini in his interview last week.
I recently got to have a hot Skype date with two of these fine young musicians, Robbie and Sam, where I learned a little more about who they are and what they’ve been up to.
Muzooka (M): How did you guys get together?
Robbie (R): We met the first week of classes last year. We were at a party, and you know, people just meet and things just happen. That’s kinda how music school is.
M: Who are some of your favorite bands / mutual influences?
S: Pretty much what you would expect – Grateful Dead, Phish, Dave Matthews Band.
R: Led Zeppelin!
M: How did you get involved with Muzooka?
Sam (S): I already knew (co-founder) Chester (Aldridge). He started telling me about it early on and it sounded amazing. We’re definitely excited to be a part of it and see where it goes.
M: I know you’ve spent a lot of the last year working out your sound togetherwith a lot of live shows. What are you working on now?
R: We’re currently writing and recording new material. It’s going really great.
M: Where do you guys record?
S: We’re using Berklee’s studios.
R: That’s definitely one of the perks of going to school here. They really want you to be creating music and working hard, so you have a lot of resources – like recording studios – available to you.
M: I know you were pretty jazzed to hear that Tony Mardini had singled you out as a band he found and loved on Muzooka; any plans to work with him yet?
R: We don’t have any plans to do so, but obviously, we would be overjoyed to have those opportunities. Hopefully we’ll have the chance to connect with him and other producers and maybe work on some stuff together. That would be awesome.
M: Do you think Ripe is going to be one of those fleeting college bands where everyone eventually evolves away from it and moves on, or are you guys in it for the long haul?
S: I think we’re really in it.
R: Yeah, everyone is just getting more invested all the time.
S: Everyone is really committed to the cause. We want to take advantage of our physical proximity while we’re at school together, and work as hard as we can while we’re all here. Hopefully that keeps working for us.